I'm sitting here with a scratchy throat, runny eyes, and not the best feeling in my head. I should be under the covers with a shot of NyQuil in me, but I wanted to record the thoughts of the moment before I got lazy and lost the moment-um. Ha ha.
What a year. Putting it mildly. Settled into a new job, lost an old one, started a new side project to replace that lost job, sold my house, moved cross-country, bought a new one, (mostly) finished a new book, started plotting the next one, pruned down, paid off debts, reassessed, re-thought, re-centered. I've mumbled on and off about this stuff through 2014, but only now am I looking back on it and realizing it was at least as big an upheaval as the year I got married ('95), the year my wife and I bought our first house ('96), the year a whole bunch of other things fell into and out of place ('01), and the year I finally figured out, with much trepidation, what I really needed to be doing with my time on earth, once and for all ('07).
The big things I have lined up for 2015 are all projects: expanding my anime criticism nexus Ganriki.org and raising the bar with it as far as I possibly can; finishing Welcome to the Fold; writing Perfect Skin, or at least getting it launched (or re-launched, as it's a ground-up reworking of an old project with new eyes); and a bunch of travel ambitions that I hope come to fruition now that I'm no longer quite so broke.
But all that is just what I came up with. I look back at the list of stuff I itemized above, and all I see are things that blind-sided me. Sure, I planned on getting married and buying a house, but how all those things unfolded didn't match any plans I could have come up with. I do not mean this in a bad way — hard to say that when come this May I'll be celebrating 20 years with my spouse — but only in the sense that no plan, no agenda, is ever the same as the reality of the event. I'm not sure I would want it any other way. A life that unfolded only according to my own plan would be nothing but tedium, tempting as it is to believe otherwise.
A few days ago I posted a quote: "I wanted to be glad and happy with my eyes fully open, without fooling myself in the belief that we lived in a pink world: to be happy to be alive in the full knowledge of all misery, our own included." I've known for a long time, without being able to articulate it properly, that this was not just what I wanted as well, but what I knew was necessary. This past year I found a few more ways to make that happen, and a few new incarnations for it as well — not just new projects to invest myself into, but new ways to look at what I already have.
For now, though, me and the cold meds have a date.
See you all next year.
Tags: real life
New York City
Other Lives Of The Mind